Member Alert – New York Senate Backs Anti-Hunting Legislation!

USFWS elephant import ban

lion4It is imperative that all residents, hunters, and individuals who use New York as a port of entry for the importation of hunting trophies put a stop to this dangerous legislation. SCI is urging all of its tri-state members to contact as many New York state Senator’s and Assembly members and ask them to oppose Senate Bill 4686.

On April 8, 2015, New York state Senator Tony Avella (D-11) introduced proposed legislation that would completely ban the import, possession, sale and transportation of five African species in New York. SB 4686, Foreign Game, is supported by PETA, Friends of Animals and the League of Human Voters.

For hunters, the legislation’s terminology may be misleading. Although state Senator Avella’s proposed law would amend New York’s environmental conservation statute, concerning the “big five African species,” this bill would not protect the traditional “Big Five” (Lion, elephant, leopard, rhino and Cape buffalo). The bill excludes the Cape buffalo but applies to both the white and black rhinoceros

According to state Senator Avella, this legislation is intended to protect these species in the wild. Neither the bill nor its supporters can explain exactly how such legislation would positively impact these African game species. In fact, passage of such a law would undermine species conservation, adversely affect sportsmen and women throughout New York, and remove jobs and livelihoods for many African people.

SB 4686 is aimed at dissuading New York’s sportsmen and women from hunting in Africa. It also targets the many other hunters who use New York as an entry port. If hunters cannot import their trophies, they will be discouraged from hunting in Africa and will stop bringing important revenue into the countries in which they hunt. The countries and local communities will lose out on the much needed revenue that stimulates their rural economies and provides funding for conservation efforts in Africa. Without the money brought in by hunters, the countries and professional hunting businesses will lack the funds needed to hire and outfit anti-poaching patrol.

 

Elephant1firstforhunters040714

SB 4686 will soon be up for a vote in the New York state Senate. Although it passed the Senate once, by a slight margin, it has been called back for another vote. SCI members should call their State Senators and tell them not to vote in support of the bill.

If the bill passes in the Senate it also needs to be passed in the State Assembly. At this time, there is no companion bill for the State Assembly to vote on but Senator Avella has made passing SB 4686 his number one legislative priority. He is actively searching for an Assembly Member to introduce that companion bill.  This must not happen. SCI members need to call their State Assembly Members to tell them not to support the bill.

It is imperative that all residents, hunters, and individuals who use New York as a port of entry for the importation of hunting trophies put a stop to this dangerous legislation. It is time for everyone reading this alert to contact as many New York state legislators as possible TODAY to urge them to oppose SB 4686 and to prevent the introduction of a bill in the Assembly!

SCI’s opposition to SB 4686 is necessary for the conservation of many African wildlife species. SCI is appalled by the poaching of any species, including any of the five species mentioned in Senator Avella’s legislation. SCI and its members remain dedicated to fight the illegal take of wildlife and cannot and will not support ill-conceived legislation that undercuts international wildlife conservation.

Please contact your state Senator and Assembly member today and politely urge him or her to OPPOSE Senate Bill 4686.

 

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